Over the next two years, Metro is expected to transform a defunct freight rail right-of-way that cuts through South Los Angeles into a five-mile active transportation corridor through its Rail to Rail/River project. Now, a complementary effort from the City of Los Angeles could add more open space along the path.
In a presentation scheduled for the June 8 meeting of the Cultural Affairs Commission, city officials showcase plans for the Slauson Connect Recreation Center, which would rise from the strip of land along the north side of Slauson Avenue between Budlong Avenue in the east and Normandie Avenue in the west. The site, which is 1,250 feet long and 81 feet in width, totals approximately 2.29 acres in size, with 60 percent of that land area going to the Slauson Connect project, and the remaining 40 percent to the Metro bike trail.
Slauson Connect, which is backed by 9th District Councilmember Curren Price, would include a new low-rise structure near the Normandie side of the site, featuring a childcare center, afterschool programs, classrooms, and a new rooftop garden. At ground level, plans also call for a 22-car parking lot and a new park space featuring a garden, a multipurpose plaza, picnic tables, public restrooms, and a children's play area.
Paul Murdoch Architects is designing the project, which would employ prefabricated steel modules for the new community center, and drought tolerant landscaping within the linear park.
Slauson Connect follows in the wake of several other projects which have sought to transform the largely industrial surroundings of the freight railway along Slauson Avenue, which is known as the Harbor Subdivision. In addition to the Metro project, Los Angeles officials have also taken steps to rezone adjacent sites to force new development to open onto Slauson. A groundbreaking was also held earlier this year for a new park on LADWP-owned land a short distance east at Slauson's intersection with Figueroa Street.
- Vermont Slauson (Urbanize LA)